Farmers fed up of paying to clear fly-tipping in Buckinghamshire

Council denies problem ‘worse since charging started’ at recycling centres, saying criminals are responsible

Friday, 9th April 2021, 8:45 am
Updated Monday, 12th April 2021, 10:04 am
One farmer had to hire machinery to clear up the mess

Fly-tipping in rural areas has increased “dramatically” since charges at local recycling centres were introduced, it has been claimed.

The owners of one farm in Buckinghamshire say they are “incredibly fed up” with repeated fly-tipping on their land and nearby lanes.

They say illegal dumping has ramped up since tip charges were brought in.

Buckinghamshire Council has refuted the claim, saying rubbish dumping is carried out by "criminals" and that household recycling centres have never accepted commercial waste free of charge.

The farmers, who are not being named, said there has always been fly-tipping locally but is escalating.

They knew of another farmer who reports to Bucks Council all instances of fly-tipping but that it can be “months” before it is cleared.

The couple had taken to using a JCB to remove rubbish from their own land following recent dumping.

“They broke a gate to get into our field and dump all of this [rubbish],” they wrote on social media. The dumping has dramatically increased since they have started charging people again at the local dump. It’s not on.”

In response, someone wrote: “And because it’s on your land, it’s your responsibility. The council charge, so you have to pay for the removal of someone else’s rubbish. So unfair.”

A spokesman for the council said: "The great majority of the incidents of fly-tipping that affect farms and private land are carried out by commercial fly tippers using vans or lorries.

"Household recycling centres have never accepted commercial waste free of charge, so the introduction of charges to householders for some kinds of waste in 2019 made no difference to the situation for criminal commercial fly-tippers.

"Buckinghamshire Council recognises that this criminal activity can be a considerable burden on farmers and landowners, which is why we make every effort to trace and prosecute the culprits.

"However, although we will investigate fly-tipping on private land, we are not able to bear the cost of clearance."